Double take on the runway

Fashion seems to be taking inspiration from some unexpected sources

What does the Michelin Man, Inspector Clouseau, Frankenstein and a Spanish lady-doll toilet roll cover, all have in common with each other? Let me tell you: they are the ultimate style icons for Spring Summer 2017.  Don’t believe me? Read on.

1. The Michelin Man – The puffer jacket/vest Balenciaga SS17



For Spring Summer 2017, Demna Gvasalia thought it would be a fantastic idea to edit the popular puffer jacket design of his Balenciaga debut show for Autumn Winter 2016 (which did very well in the street style trending stakes, so well, it is still a prominent look on the streets this spring) by cutting off the sleeves. The models wore the jackets – sorry, 3D vests, with bare arms. However, the interesting move did get us thinking that the design choice may hinder the thermal properties of the original design.  But hey, no pain no gain, right?

2. Inspector Clouseau and Frankenstein – The pumped-up trench


Balenciaga and Michael Kors seemingly took style tips from Inspector Jacques Clouseou of The Pink Panther film series for their interpretations of the trench coat. The shoulders were inflated, which could also imply that Frankenstein was a contributing muse. It is becoming apparent that Spring Summer 2017 is the season for swelling one’s surface area by at least 20-30cm. It may be difficult to squeeze and squish through doorways, but at least it won’t hurt with all the padding.
3. Spanish lady-doll toilet roll cover – Valentino gowns


Spring Summer 2017 presented Pierpaolo Piccioli’s first solo collection for Valentino, after the departure of his longtime design partner Maria Grazia Chiuri last July. The collection offered a continual array of candied coloured gowns in phosperescent pinks, lemon yellows, bright corals and a sprinkle of teal blue. But it wasn’t our sweet tooth’s that got us captivated by the collection, but the undeniable similarities the dresses held to Spanish lady doll toilet covers. Spanish lady doll toilet covers? If you were a child in the 70s-80s you may know about these, and if you weren’t, you may have seen them in your Grandparents bathrooms. Basically, it is a crocheted doll, who’s long knitted skirt serves as a decorative toilet roll cover.

4. Quality Street wrappers – Coloured metallics

Quality Street chocolates are so popular that in 2010, 15 million tins were sold; so many that if they were to be lined up they could reach the moon and back. Fashion designers may have cottoned on to the appeal, so much so, they were inspired to incorporate Nestlé’s distinctly successful design techniques. This theory could explain the abundance of metallic chocolate wrapper looking designs on the Spring Summer 2017 catwalk. A ruffled mini dress at Versace was noticeably similar in shade of ‘The Purple One.’ Meanwhile at Gucci a frilly metallic trouser suit was undeniably reminiscent of the pink ‘Vanilla Fudge’ wrapper. At Jason Wu inspiration may have been drawn from the ‘Coconut Éclair’, resulting in an asymmetric blue foil midi dress. Sweet.

5. Laundry tablet bags – MSGM net bags


If you were born in the 1990s you might remember playing with marbles at school. We do, using the metal man hole covers on the playground floor as a ‘marble pitch’, where intense and sometimes lengthy battles took place (some occasions called for the marbles to be left in position until the next break after class). You may then remember, where you would store your prize glass globules. We do, in small washing machine-tablet bags. The nylon nets were secured with a toggled drawstring which also served as a convenient handle, allowing you show off your valued possessions. Seemingly inspired by playground nostalgia, MSGM incorporated the laundry item into their Spring Summer 2017 collection. The models held the bags in a similar manner to the children versions of us, clinging at the toggled handle. This time round they were available in a rainbow variety of colours: red and white, blue and orange, pink and black, and of course the traditional combination of blue and white.

By Lauren Woodward